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History

Local religious groups have sponsored chaplains for the LAC+USC Medical Center since it was founded, calling on their communities for aid.

In 1988, Chaplain Santos Ramos asked for “angel churches” to help respond to urgent needs of patients whose hospitalization threatened the well-being of their families.

“Project Angel” was formed, operating under the auspices of the Presbyterian Church (USA). It worked with patients referred by any of the then 15 Healthcare Network chaplains and clinical social workers.

As more people responded to their neighbor’s need, Angel Interfaith Network (AIN) was born, incorporating as a nonprofit organization in 2001.

In 2004, AIN became a member of the Healthcare Network's Community Pastoral Care Advisory Association.

Over the years, AIN has enjoyed a fruitful partnership with Department of Spiritual Care LAC+USC Medical Center: CARES, which operates under the auspices of LAC+USC Medical Center; and St. Camillus Center for Spiritual Care, sharing resources and collaborating on donations of clothing, furniture, and other assistance to patients on an as-needed basis, by referral from the LAC+USC Medical Center staff. 

At the end of 2010, there was an opportunity for AIN, St. Camillus Center, and the LAC+USC Department for Spiritual Care to work together and reduce overhead costs. Beginning in 2011, AIN will operate as a separate project under the auspices of St. Camillus Center. 

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AIN Leadership Council

President and Chairperson
Rev. Nancy Moore
Retired Clergy, PCUSA

Retired from active pastoral ministry in the Presbyterian Church (USA) two years ago, I have since found a new ministry networking with community and congregations in Northeast Los Angeles.  I enjoy preaching and speaking about our community and how it fulfills God’s promises.  I teach at Claremont School of Theology in urban field education.  Mother of four adults spread across our country, wife of a community activist, I have lived and worked in Highland Park over 20 years.

 

Secretary
Arlene Creitz

Volunteer

Bill and I celebrated our 22nd wedding anniversary on Valentine's Day. We live in Sunland and are active at the First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood. We both have wonderful sons, daughter-in-laws, and grandchildren. After teaching for three decades, my first consulting job was with Karen Bading in L.E,A.R.N. schools in Los Angeles. She introduced me to AIN and I am serving for a third term as secretary to the Board. My major fund raising effort is with the Silent Auction and Opportunity Drawing at the fall luncheon.

 

Liaison between AIN and St. Camillus Center
Fr. Chris Ponnet

LAC + USC Department of Pastoral Care

I’ve been Pastor St. Camillus Center for Pastoral Care and Director of LAC+USC Medical Center Department of Spiritual Care since 1995.  I was born and raised in Temple City, CA and was ordained a Catholic priest in 1983 from St. John Seminary in Camarillo with M.Div. and M. Theology along with board certification through the Association of Professional Chaplains. As chaplain at LAC+USC I have worked with AIN and celebrated its commitment to our patients’ post hospital patient care and to our student chaplains in CPE who have interned at AIN.

 

Mary Jarrett

I am a California native, Pasadena born, raised and schooled. I work in the accounting industry, am a 20 year member of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses, and am on the Women's Guild at Bishop Gooden Center. Mother of a beautiful adult daughter and grandmother of the best grandson you could imagine. I started volunteering at Angel Interfaith, and have been drawn in by its great goals and possibilities. Enjoy music and the arts and being of service to my community.

Inez Beckon-English

In 1983, I started working for Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, providing emotional, therapeutic and supportive services to the LAC+USC patients and the outside community as a Clinical Social Worker. I have a Master degree in Social Work and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. During my career with Los Angeles Department of Health Services, I have also worked in the capacity of a Clinical Social Work Supervisor and currently I holds the position of Clinical Social Work Assistant Chief at LAC+USC Medical Center. My role now is to provide leadership, consultation and guidance to professional, para-professional staff and the community. I am dedicated and instrumental in the development, implementation and monitoring of programs that best benefit the patients’ we serve.   

 

Elizabeth Gibbs Zehnder

In 2015, I began serving as the Presbyterian staff chaplain at LAC+USC Medical Center in the Department of Spiritual Care. Before that, I served as Pastor at Immanuel Presbyterian Church, in KoreaTown, Los Angeles. I studied at Fuller Theological Seminary and received my M.Div in Cross-Cultural Studies. As I serve the patients at LAC+USC, I am grateful for AIN's commitment to patients and their families.

 

Hagar Benitez

 

 

Ann Mills
Co-Founder, Honorably Retired

 

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Staff

Raquel Salinas,
Network Project Coordinator

Belinda Vidaurri
Network Service Coordinator

Christopher Stephan
Office Manager, St Camillus Center for Spiritual Care

 

CONTACT US BY EMAIL

 

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AIN works cooperatively with the following Community Partners ...

Baby2Baby
Brownson House of Catholic Charities
CARES, LAC + USC Medical Center Auxiliary
Clinica Oscar Romero
Convalescent Aid Society
Corazon de la Familia
Elizabeth House
El Nido
Families in Transition Program, Pasadena Unified School District
Holy Family Church, South Pasadena, Referral Ministries
La Casa de San Gabriel Community Center
LA Diaper Drive
Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority
Pasadena Alumni Support Center
Proyecto Pastoral Guadalupe Homeless Project
Proyecto Pastoral Thrift Store and After School Program
St. Camillus Center for Spiritual Care
Tierra del Sol Foundation
Walden House
Wise Senior Center

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